Tag Archives: Wedding

Good Day Austin | DIY Wedding Invitations

25 Feb

 

 

I had a great time with Good Day Austin’s Anchor, Lauren Petrowski, talking about DIYing wedding invitations for their Make It Monday segment. I was thrilled to have the opportunity and am excited about the possibility of being a guest on the morning show again within the next few months.
FOX 7 | Good Day Austin: Make it Monday | DIY Wedding Invitations www.gustoandgraceblog.com

 

The image above may be deceiving, as you can’t actually press the play button. Unfortunately WordPress.com doesn’t support FOX 7 videos. You can watch the video by visiting Good Day Austin’s website here: DIY Invitations.

The three minute segment really flew by, so be sure to check out my  six tips for DIYing your wedding invitation suite.

Thanks for reading and, now, watching,

♥ Dominique

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DIY Gilded Cotton Boll Boutonnieres

1 Oct

Before even thought about my bouquet, I knew what I wanted to do for boutonnieres for the wedding. Anthony and I met at the Cotton Bowl in Fair Park, Dallas so I thought natural cotton bolls would be a sweet nod to where we met (like our engagement photos).

Rather than paying $135 on boutonnieres (9 x $15 is what I was quoted), I DIYed my boutonnieres for $17.

I made the bows with metallic velvet ribbon and hot glue, then adhered them to the stems of the natural cotton. I was going to keep the stems natural, but last minute I decided to gild the stems with supplies I had leftover from making my wooden menus. I love how they turned out. I made silver boutonnieres for the dads, groomsmen, ushers, and officiant, but I painted Anthony’s gold.  I think these are perfect for fall wedding and could be painted any color. They can be made months in advance, and and add great texture to the grooms(men) attire.

Image

Originally I planned on hot-gluing pins behind the ribbons to attach the boutonnieres to the guys’ lapels to make it easy for them, but in the middle of making them, I found out the head of the cotton were just to heavy to stay upright. Typical straight pin application worked just fine.

DIY Gilded Cotton Boll Boutonniere www.gustoandgraceblog.com

All photos were taken by Jeremy & Krisitin photography. 

Video

Our Wedding Video

3 Sep

The long-awaited wedding video has finally arrived! I have watched it multiple times already today. It’s such a feel-good short film.

The first 1:37 is our rehearsal dinner. If you’re wondering what everyone is watching at 0:50, see it here.

Watching the video gives me the urge to make s’mores and release balloons into the sky all over again. These memories are such priceless moments and I will always consider this video a true treasure.

Follow  Jordan Productions on Facebook to see more of his work. He is such a talented young creative with a great eye.

 

DIY Floral Shutter Backdrop

13 Aug

When thinking about my what I wanted my wedding centerpieces one of the first questions I asked myself was “What did my sister have for her centerpieces?” For the life of me, I couldn’t remember. I had to ask her.

Here’s what’s interesting: I spent hours hot-gluing rose metals to long sticks to make the unique and dramatic centerpieces my sister envisioned. Between that, and realizing centerpieces had nothing to do with the priorities Anthony and I set for the wedding, I opted to forgo the expensive floral centerpieces.

That doesn’t mean I didn’t want flowers at the wedding. I love flowers. If I were the type of person who could rationalize spending oodles on a wedding, I would have had flowers everywhere.

DIY Floral Shutters *www.gustoandgraceblog.com*

I found another way to incorporate them in the decor without spending a new piece of furniture, or an extra mortgage payment. I made flower covered gold shutters for a grand total of $60.

While I just used small shutters on a table, you could use large shutters (or even a shutter like room divider), for an altar backdrop. Or you could use them as an escort card display, sliding escort cards (folded like a place card), in the slats of the shutters. I think they would look great in a fun color with bright flowers, I chose gold and white to stay consistent with my metallic color scheme.

DIY Floral Shutters *www.gustoandgraceblog.com*

All images were taken by Jeremy & Kristin Photography.

What you need:

  • Shutters- I got mine from a used home supply store for $6 per shutter
  • Spray paint- I used 2-3 cans of Rustoleum for my 3 shutters
  • Flowers- I used about 200 button poms and carnations to keep it cost-effective
  • Water tubes- I ordered a pack of 100 from afloral.com

The process is simple. Spray paint your shutters and let them dry completely (See my husband helping me on Instagram). The flowers can be added a day or two before your event. Add ice-cold water to all of your water tubes, filling them about two-thirds of the way. The cold water helps the flowers stay fresh and keeps them from opening too early. If you add the flowers the day of your event, room temperature water is fine.

Trim the stems of your flowers to  approximately 4-5 inches in length, varying them slightly. With the slats of your shutters facing upward (see photos), slip one or two flowers through a slat, putting a water tube on the back side. Repeat this process until your shutter is pretty well covered. Remember that most flowers will open up more after you purchase them, so leave a little room between flowers.

Do any of my wedding guests remember my centerpieces?

Video

Rehearsal Dinner Slideshow

30 Jul

Three months after the wedding, Anthony and I are still waiting on our wedding video. I hope that means it is going to be really good! We also had our videographer shoot some footage of our rehearsal dinner.  We wanted to be sure we had some professionally captured snapshots of the that night too.

I’ll share more about our rehearsal dinner once we get our short film, but I thought it might be fun to share the slideshow Anthony’s parents had made for us and the guests of our rehearsal dinner. Just imagine you’re sitting with a bunch of people you love, roasting tabletop s’mores, with the anticipation of being married in the morning as you watch this. You might begin to imagine how I felt that magical night.

Rehearsal Dinner from Dominique Paolini on Vimeo.

The slideshow was created by Turquoise Video Productions.

DIY Gilded Wood Menus

23 Jul

The cabinet color vote is at exactly 50/50. Not helpful… Tell your friends to vote, just don’t tell them what to vote!

I made these menus for the bar and buffet at my wedding:

Gilded_Wood_Menu_Gusto_and_Grace

What you will need:

  • Wood slices (I bought mine from Michaels)
  • Inkjet waterslide transfer paper (I used Lazertran)
  • Inkjet Printer
  • Scissors
  • 3 Brushes
  • Pure Turpentine (in the paint section of a home improvement store)
  • Small Glass Dish (to hold turpentine)
  • Oil-based Polyurethane
  • Gold and/or Silver Liquid Leaf or Liquid Gilding

DIY_Gilded_Wood_Menus_Gusto_and_Grace

Step 1:

Create your menu in an imaging or word processing software. I used Microsoft Word (Note: if you use Word and your printer does not allow you to print in mirror, you will need to type your menu as “Word Art” in order to rotate it or paste it to MS Paint and select “flip horizontal”). Of course, I used the same fonts from my wedding invitation suite. Print the image and cut around your wording, leaving a 1/2 inch space between your menu and the edge of the paper.

Step 2:

Soak the decal in water for about 60 seconds. In a well ventilated area, while the decal is soaking, brush your wood slice with turpentine- be generous. Blot excess water off of the decal with a paper towel. Place the decal on the wood and slide off the backing. This should happen easily. Do your best to remove air bubbles from the decal; you can use turpentine to help with this if you need a little more moisture. Brush polyurethane over the top of the decal: this is what causes the white edges to become clear. Let dry.

Step 3:

After the polyurethane is dry, dip a small paintbrush into your liquid gilding and completely cover the bark around the edge of the wood. Voila!

The first image of the menus was taken at my wedding by Jeremy & Kristin Photography.

And Sixpence in Her Shoe

25 Jun

“Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue…” Most people, especially non-British brides, stop the rhyme there. Did you know it goes on to say, “and a sixpence in her shoe”?

According to The Knot, “Something old represents continuity; something new offers optimism for the future; something borrowed symbolizes borrowed happiness; something blue stands for purity, love, and fidelity; and a sixpence in your shoe is a wish for good fortune and prosperity.”

While I think that blessed marriages come from a lot more than rhymes and customs, why would I leave off the last part?

I didn’t.

My “something old” was a pair of shoes I splurged on, just after paying off my student loans, when I walked into Neiman Marcus and saw the designer there signing them. Maybe they aren’t quite old (my something borrowed and my sixpence were much older), but they were the only part of my wedding attire that was not purchased specifically for that day.

Something Old

My something new was my dress (though my veil, garter, and the necklace Anthony bought me were all new too).

Something New

My something borrowed came from my sister/matron-of-honor. A day or two before the wedding she asked me if I had something borrowed. I didn’t. She also asked me if I had earrings. I didn’t. She came to my rescue with a pair of vintage earrings that matched my necklace perfectly.

Something Borrowed

I put much more thought into my something blue than my something borrowed. A few months before the wedding I ordered blue clothing labels that read, “April 27, 2013 Gannoe-Paolini Wedding.” The tags came in multiples, so Anthony got one for each piece of his suit and some family members have our wedding date sewn into the clothing they wore that day.

Something Blue

The sixpence, from 1929 was ordered from Etsy. After misplacing the one I ordered, I almost used one from the 1940s that had been my stepdad’s grandfather’s from his travels. The night before the wedding, I found the one I purchased, and opted to use it so I would not lose such an irreplaceable heirloom.

A Sixpence in Her Shoe

All images, with the exception of the sixpence, were taken by Jeremy and Kristin Photography.

Craft Night and Crepe Lasagna

21 Feb

I am deep into the project phase of my DIY heavy wedding planning. Last week, I hosted a wedding craft night.  With the help of my mom, Anthony’s mom, my bridesmaids, and a couple of other close friends, my wedding t0-do list has several new check marks! Having more than a dozen hands made the monotonousness tasks enjoyable and short-lived.

Gusto and Grace: Monogram Stamped Favor Bags

On craft night, cupcakes from the wedding cake baker were a must. So was this crepe lasagna my fiancé told me would be a great recipe to try “with my friends.” As the original recipe is in Italian, I translated it to English, converted it to US measurements and adapted a few things and here’s the recipe I ended up with:

Crepe Lasagna

Serves 8

For the crepes:

1 1/4 cup milk

7/8 cup of flour

2 eggs

1 Tablespoon Parmesan

Salt

Parsley or pesto

For the filling:

10 oz. frozen spinach

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 egg

1 cup Parmesan cheese

Approx. 15 oz. Ricotta

salt, pepper, nutmeg

For the sauce:

14 oz. tomato sauce

oregano, pepper

+ a handful of extra Parmesan

Mix all of the crepe ingredients together, then let the batter sit in the fridge for at least two hours but up to a day. To make the crepes, pour slightly less than 1/4 cup of batter onto a hot skillet or griddle. When the batter starts to bubble, flip it, like you would an ordinary pancake. You should get 6 or 7  8-9 inch crepes.

Saute the spinach with the garlic over medium heat. Mix in the ricotta. Stir in the egg. Add the Parmesan, nutmeg, salt and pepper. This will serve as your filling. Mix the tomato sauce with the oregano and pepper (or other Italian spices of your choice).

Pour a few tablespoons of sauce into the bottom of a 9 inch round pan. I used a glass pie pan. Lay down your first crepe, add filling, and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Repeat until you have used about half of your crepes. Halfway, add only tomato sauce between two crepes, and then continue with the ricotta an Parmesan layers. Your top layer should be a crepe. Pour the tomato sauce on top and bake at 350F for 20 minutes. This is even better a day old!

Gusto and Grace: Gold Shutters

Between craft night, my stepdad’s work, and the weekend with my fiancé, in the past week mini envelopes have been stuffed, stands welded, shutters painted, favor bags stamped, envelopes embossed, yards and yards of ribbon cut, fabric strips torn, signs glittered and tissue paper ruffled.

Gusto & Grace: Collected Mercury Glass

Groomsmen suits have been chosen. Groom’s cake toppers have been ordered. I finally began to collect mercury glass pieces. Wine has been tasted and voted on. The officiant has been met with.  A timeline has been drafted. Ceremony music has been selected. It’s all coming together…

Sixty-four days and counting!

Making (Wedding) Plans

25 Jan

Gusto & GraceBride ButtonI’ve got my groove back. I fell behind on many wedding to-dos during the holidays, and the turn of the new year made marrying Anthony seem so near. So how did I re-group after failing to meet the deadlines for the check marks I strongly desired?

First, I found a checklist that worked for me. I have looked at many lists that are supposed to remind you of what you should not forget, or the details that might never cross you mind. I bought a planner. One of my bridesmaids gave me a planner. I found checklists on sites like Real Simple and The Knot. I compared. I scribbled. I crumpled. I tossed. They all seemed to leave out different key elements. Until….THIS! Have you made contact sheets for your wedding? Thought about your floor plan? Created a timeline? Compared bridesmaids gowns? Tracked deposits and payments? Russell and Hazel thought of everything.

Second, I set a date for a project night. It is important to me to involve my friends and family in my wedding, so I planned a night to get together with a group of ladies: the moms and the bridesmaids, to help with projects such as embossing envelopes and making signs and centerpieces. Make sure you try the projects out before having everyone get together and realizing that it would work so much better if you had “X”. I am grateful that I have friends and family (and soon-to-be family) that are enriching my engagement and investing in our wedding.

Lastly, I had a “share the vision” session with my mom. Sitting down and showing her my thoughts, plans and wishes put me at ease. After a few hours, I felt like all was right in the wedding world again. It might be your wedding coordinator, your mother, or a friend, but if you are planning a wedding, I highly encourage you to find someone you can hash out all the gritty details with. Find someone else who is there for your musing and rambling. Find someone who delights in the joyous “small things.” Brainstorm. With someone.

The Perfect Wedding Venue

23 Sep

Bell Tower Chapel- Katie Norris Portrait Arts

The venue is the first big piece of any wedding planning puzzle. When I think of the venue Anthony and I selected, I can’t help but think it is perfect. We started talking about where we wanted to get married and we came up with two absolute criteria: the first is that we wanted to get married in Fort Worth, where I, and both of our parents live, the second criterion was that I didn’t want to spend more than a certain amount on our venue. Anthony narrowed down the options even further by saying he didn’t want to stray too far from downtown.

Another deciding factor in our venue hunt was date. We played hopscotch on the calendar, avoiding family birthdays, holidays, and the Texas heat until we came up with our options: April or October. We didn’t want the average 14 month engagement, so we settled on April and started our search. I added one more thought to the list of ideals, but tried to remain flexible: I wanted to have the ceremony and reception in the same place.

I did my research, and lots of it. I began online by looking photos and compared pricing. Then I sent e-mails and made phone calls. Ultimately, I narrowed it down to two venues: YWCA and Bell Tower Chapel. I set up an appointment for Anthony and I at Bell Tower via e-mail, then called YWCA to set up an appointment and found out they were booked each weekend in April. If Bell Tower didn’t work out, the search would continue.

Let me back up a bit. When I first saw Bell Tower Chapel, it stood out to me. It was the only venue that grabbed me. It might have even been love at first sight (if you can fall in love with a venue).  I had never seen it, nor heard of it. I didn’t know anyone who had gotten married there, but the photos, which don’t do the venue justice, spoke to me.

We met with coordinators of Bell Tower, and signed a contract. That’s it. One venue is all we visited. But it gets better.  As silly or insignificant as they may seem the chairs that come with the venue are, well, perfect. My colours are metallics. The chiavari chairs for the reception area are gold. Additionally, what venue called Bell Tower would be complete without a bell? Anthony and I are looking forward to ringing the bell after we walk back down the aisle together. Wedding bells will be ringing, literally.

There are a couple of other details that add to the feeling of delightful perfection. The Chapel was built in 1958 and designed by architect Donald Nelson. That may mean nothing to you, but it holds significance to us. One of Donald Nelson’s most notable works was Fair Park, in Dallas, Texas, where we met! Furthermore, the chapel was donated in 2008 to ACH Child and Family Services. They had no programmatic use for the chapel and gardens so they use it as a wedding venue and all proceeds support the mission of the organization.

Location. Budget. Timing. Significance. Support.

Venue perfection.

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